Friday’s Fight Previews: Bradley v Provodnikov and Skelton v McDermott

By Niall Doran

Well folks another weekend of the sweet science is upon us!

Starting off Saturday night at the Home Depot Center in California, WBO Welterweight champ Timothy Bradely puts his strap on the line against tough Russian Ruslan Provodnikov. With the bookmakers Bradely goes into this fight as a big favourite and to be honest I can’t see any other result than a Bradley win. Provodnikov has a decent record of (22-1-0) with 15 ko’s but looking through his record old faded champions like Emanuel Augustus and DeMarcus Corley are the only names that jump out at me. Bradley meanwhile has been boxing in an almost different dimension let alone class with names like Pacquiao, Casamayor,Devon Alexander,Lamont Peterson, Nate Campbell and Kendall Holt some of his notable recent wins. I’m not really a fan of Bradely’s boxing style, seems to be very scrappy and untidy but he does seem to be able to always find a way to get the win. This should be on paper one of his easier opponents in recent years but after the last few weeks of boxing upsets nothing surprises me anymore. In all honesty if I were a betting man a Bradely points win looks to be a fairly safe bet as realistically I don’t see him having the power to knockout a young hungry challenger from Russia like Provdnikov.

Just to briefly add that on the under card there is a potentially cracking fight between two undefeated welterweight prospects Jessie Vargas (21-0, 9kos) and Wale Omotoso (23-0, 19kos). Many might remember that Vargas was once a prospect of the Mayweather Promotions banner. This will surely be an acid test for him, with the winner of this likely to go on to challenge for world honours in the near future.

Moving back to the UK this weekend there is a tasty little dust up taking place tonight at York Hall where Matt Skelton and John McDermott lock horns for the English Heavyweight Title. Both men it could be argued are on their way down but their styles and heavyweight fists could make for an explosive encounter. Skelton is coming off that loss a few months back to David Price and now at the ripe old age of 46 will surely be thinking this is his last run at a potential British title. McDermott is the nearly man of British boxing it seems to me. He has been close on a number of occasions to winning the British title but has just always fallen short at the final hurdle. He was extremely unlucky not to be given this decision over Tyson Fury when the two fought a few years back. Look what Fury has gone on to do since and look how McDermott’s career has gone. Boxing can be a ruthless game at times but since that fight Iv’e always thought McDermott had a good pedigree and heart. McDermott surprisingly enough goes into the fight heavy underdog to a man who is 13 years his senior. I actually think there might be value in sticking a 5er on McDermott to KO/TKO the 46 year old Skelton this weekend which you might find at around 3 or 4/1!

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